It’s been a while since I’ve written an email or a blog post, or even done a video.
I was on a business sabbatical.
I was taking some time, and didn’t want to rush on it.
My typical entrepreneur self-rushes into a new decision or a new idea and immediately and I hit the ground running. Even as a natural planner, I had a tendency to jump right in with excitement and that pure adrenaline rush that comes with new business ideas.
However I started the year, being burnt out, tired, and just plain exhausted.
I was ready to go get a regular 9 to 5 job, where everybody else had to worry about the strategy, the marketing, the management and everything else!
Instead, from the very wise counsel of one of my mentors, I took time off. (As much as a business owner can take time off.)
I did the absolute minimum to keep my business going – working with clients, writing paid articles was about the extent of my working.
Other than that, I was a mom, a wife, did a bunch of mediating, working out – and just thinking about my business and where it was gonna go.
I learned a lot – which is actually an understatement that I simply can’t put any other way.
I dug into what my business meant to me, and where I wanted it to go. I considered how I had gotten to where I was – and if I was really on the right track.
I learned one of the hardest things in business is, that the longer you’re in business, the easier it is to get sidetracked.
You might think that that would be odd, because you’ve been in business. You’re on the right path – you’re making progress.
But we all evolve, we all change. Our businesses grow, society grows.
And sometimes things get out of line.
So you need a sabbatical. Get in touch with who you are, who the business is, who the world is – today and not back when you started the business.
What did I learn?
I learned while I was doing something I loved and was passionate about, I wasn’t exactly on target.
I wasn’t truly using my skills to the utmost that I could, in a way that I enjoyed.
Once I figured out exactly what the target was, it took more time to figure out how the changes were going to take place.
I did some more research, lots of education, and more meditating and thinking about it.
As I continued to learn about me and my business, and the direction we were headed, things became easier. It was right. Instead of being caught up in the grindstone writing one more blog post, or filming one more video on a topic that just didn’t feel right – I had time to refocus on what was the right thing to do and what was a natural fit.
Things that were easier to accomplish while being on a sabbatical.
So, what was right and what was natural?
Well Smart Step, Inc. is adding business consulting, with the focus on micro business owners. This focus will be run from a new site: Smart Step Business Advisors.
More specifically that division will work with small business owners with 20 people or less, who are focused not on being the next big tech startup, are focused on providing a better life for their families.
Everything they do is for their families. They want the business to grow, they want it to be strong. They enjoy making money. But running the business is all for a bigger reason – to provide for their families.
You can learn more about the approach by heading over to the new site and checking out the new business growth pyramid I created. Micro business growth pyramid.
At the same time, because these are micro family focused businesses, the end point is ultimately financial freedom.
So while expanding into business consulting, because business is really what I love and what I am passionate about – it’s still about the finances. It’s still about taking money out of the business, and putting it into another asset class so that your future is not tied up in one thing.
So you can get to the point where you’re done, you’re burnt out, you take your sabbatical – and you decide you’re done, that you have the money to go do what you want. No matter what that is – to start another business, to explore the world, to enjoy the grand kids.
Even though you might think that’s a really long time away, it will be here sooner than you think and preparing now gives you more options down the road.
Because of this Take A Smart Step will still be personal finance but with an emphasis on investing and specializing on the small business owner.
No more trying to figure out what you need from generic advice for non-business owners. This site will help you keep more of your profits and grow them in other areas outside your business.
Here are some tips to help you decide what is the right direction for your business.
Ultimately remember to care for yourself and don’t rush every decision. The right one will come at the right time if you stop and listen.
Need help determining what you want to do with your business and life? I can help you explore and guide the way with one on one coaching. Check out my Business Owners Sabbatical Journey coaching program.